With 12 games remaining in the season, Jason Kidd will try to put the Nets in position to pass Toronto and potentially have home-court advantage in the first round.
But the Nets rookie coach will have to do so while juggling the health of his team and making sure that his key players stay healthy for the postseason.
Kevin Garnett has missed 14 straight games with a back injury and hasn’t played since the end of February. At some point, Garnett will need some action in a game to get back into shape for the playoffs.
Kidd said even before Garnett got hurt that he would keep KG on a minutes restriction in the playoffs. But at what point do Kidd and the Nets bring Garnett back and how much do you play him?
The Nets have four sets of back-to-back games in April which means if Garnett is healthy, he still will miss at least four more games next month since the Nets don’t plan on playing Garnett in complete back to backs.
At some point KG needs to regain his in-game conditioning. And the Nets need to win to keep up with Toronto and potentially gain home-court advantage for the first round. They’ll also have to incorporate Garnett back into the mix and get used to playing together again. However, that shouldn’t be too much of an issue since he is an important voice on defense, one of the team’s best rebounders and will only play limited minutes.
Still, Kidd will have to figure out how to juggle the team’s health while trying to win as many games as he can down the stretch.
Life without KG inside has been a pain to the Nets.
Nets question: How much does KG have to play before the postseason begins?
Nets fact: Of the Nets’ remaining 12 games, only two of those games are against teams with a winning record (Houston and Miami). The Nets do play Minnesota, which is 35-35 entering Friday’s games.
What’s next: The Nets play the Cavaliers at home at 7:30.